WARSAW, Poland — Poland’s Defence Ministry has awarded two contracts worth about 13 billion zloty (U.S. $3 billion) to boost the nation’s short-range air defense capabilities.

Under the first contract, valued at roughly £1.9 billion (U.S. $2.4 billion), the government ordered Common Anti-air Modular Missiles, or CAMM, as well as iLaunchers from European consortium MBDA. The weapons will be part of Poland’s 22 Pilica+ very-short-range air defense batteries.

In a statement, MBDA called the forthcoming procurement “the largest European short-range air defense acquisition program in NATO.”

Lt. Col. Krzysztof Płatek, the spokesperson for the ministry’s armament agency, tweeted that MBDA is to deliver 44 iLaunchers and “several hundred” CAMMS to the military in the years 2025 to 2029.

Warsaw awarded the second contract to a consortium led by Poland’s state-run defense giant PGZ, which is to provide the country’s military with 16 new Pilica+ batteries and six upgraded ones for about 3 billion zloty.

“The Pilica+ complements the multi-layer anti-aircraft and anti-missile protection of the Polish skies which is being developed by the military,” PGZ president Sebastian Chwałek said. “The war in Ukraine demonstrates how important the lowest layer of the anti-missile shield is, as it allows to efficiently strike, among others, unmanned aerial vehicles.”

The CAMM interceptor is capable of defeating air threats within a range of 25 kilometers (16 miles), according to data from MBDA.

In April 2022, Polish Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak inked a deal that paved the way for the country’s acquisition of a short-range air defense system using the CAMM missile. The contract designated PGZ as the integrator of the system, dubbed Narew. In this capacity, PGZ collaborates with the European industry group supplying the missile technology.

The Narew will complement the two Patriot Configuration 3+ batteries Poland secured last year under the Wisła midrange air defense program. Błaszczak announced in May 2022 Poland had requested the United States sell it a further six Patriot batteries with related equipment.

Jaroslaw Adamowski is the Poland correspondent for Defense News.

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